2016 Master Plan: The Patio Quadrant
We’re a little behind the eight ball this year on the garden planning. Usually we start a new plot of all the vegetable beds on New Year’s Day (or very shortly thereafter). This year we only just got around to this, so we’re about three weeks behind schedule. Though that doesn’t seem like a big deal (we’re nowhere near planting seeds outdoors, after all), it puts us behind on ordering the seeds we need to start. Still, it’s hard to get too worked up about it when the wind chill outside is just 10 degrees.
Anyway, we finally did get our act together and lay out the plans, so here is the patio quadrant plan for the spring:
On the left-hand side there is a long row of strawberries. Though we considered moving the strawberries to the other small fruit beds to replace our struggling cranberries, we ended up keeping them right here, where there’s much more room to devote to a crop that has been quite successful for us over the years. Provided everything survives the winter (unlike last year), this will be the first time we’ve have a full 27 feet of strawberries to harvest.
That long strawberry bed is divided into four sections, and each year the oldest section of strawberries is replaced, since strawberries don’t bear well after a few years. We alternate June-bearing and ever-bearing to make sure we stay in balance with the picking, and since this year was an ever-bearing year, we chose more Seascape strawberries. These are our absolute favorites: big, shiny, sweet, and super-productive.
Across the top are watermelons and cantaloupe. This year we’re going with a mini, seedless watermelon in hopes that we’ll be able to actually eat more of them before we’re forced to feed them to the chickens. We had a blast growing big, traditional melons, but they take forever to mature, and we can’t finish them before they go bad.
On the right are leeks (above the path) and onions (below the path). When the onions are harvested in July, we’ll have a clear space to plant greens to overwinter in a greenhouse tunnel. This will be convenient because the tunneled leeks and tunneled greens will be close to the house when it gets cold and miserable.
Finally, the bottom row (closest to the house) is filled with the same perennials that have always been there: rhubarb, lavender, and roses.